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01.05.2019 | Blog

Innovative Ideas to Fight Hunger

Augmented reality, shared economy and a multimedia information app: Welthungerhilfe is increasingly developing and using digital services to get closer to achieving the "zero hunger" goal.

Measuring a child with the Child Growth Monitor
The Child Growth Monitor in action: At the Anganwadi Center in Hirapur, India, a child is being measured with the help of the app. © Welthungerhilfe
Anna Kröger Team Communications

The digital revolution is changing business, politics and society. Humanitarian assistance and development cooperation are not exactly frontrunners of innovation, but in these fields too increasing use is being made of the enormous potential for digitisation and networking.

Welthungerhilfe is currently implementing three innovative apps: Child Growth Monitor, AgriShare and Kurima Mari. What the three ideas have in common is that they are all scalable and they can be implemented in several projects and countries. This is vital to speed the fight against hunger, and to reach the goal of “zero hunger by 2030”.

Child Growth Monitor: augmented reality saves children's lives

Child Growth Monitor is an app that uses augmented reality to detect malnutrition in children. A 3D scan checks height and weight, so the app can immediately determine whether the child is malnourished. 

This app allows aid organisations to save valuable time during assessment. It allows them to detect in time where actin is needed, and in many cases, this can save lives. Digital data is vollected directly, facilitating monitoring of entire regions or countries and making it possible to react faster and more effectively.

AgriShare: a shared economy app for small farmers

AgriShare is a smartphone app intended to link African small farmers with other small farmers, organisations and companies, to enable cooperation based on the shared economy. It allows them to share resources and offer services. For example, a farmer who has no tractor can use the app to display and rent tractors in a certain area, or with certain specifications. People can use the app to find a mechanic and make a direct booking.

AgriShare has been on the market in Zimbabwe since March 2019. From the beginning, the app was designed in close collaboration with its potential users. With the help of user testing, AgriShare is being continuously optimised and developed further. The idea has also received recognition outside Welthungerhilfe: AgriShare won the Jury Award at the WFP Innovation Pitch Night.

Kurima Mari: Market Access And Knowledge for Smallscale Farmers

How Welthungerhilfe is supporting innovative ideas and projects.

Many small farmers in Africa do not have sufficient access to market information – which often results in them charging for their products that are too low. The lack of access to information makes it difficult for small farmers to respond to price fluctuations or weather changes, apply new farming techniques and increase their yields.

Kurima Mari is trying to address this issues. It is a mobile app designed to enable small-scale farmers to earn more income from farming by providing information on how to grow for the market, market linkages, video tutorials, podcasts and a library of literature. The aim is to fight hunger and poverty by enabling smallscale farmers to participate in agricultural marketing and also to provide a self-empowerment extension tool for all issues relating to agriculture. Kurima Mari has been on the market in Zimbabwe since July 2016.

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